No hesitation, just a case of poor awareness levels

A low level of awareness that prevails among customers as well as ground level bank staff could be the reason behind the less-than-desired offtake of CLSS for housing, according to a senior banker.

There is no reluctance. For banks, the scheme neither poses any additional risk or imposes any additional burden, explains J. Swaminathan, Chief General Manager of State Bank of India’s Hyderabad Circle.

“We have no hesitation in extending that facility as it is the customer who stands to benefit from the subsidy,” he said in an interaction recently.

It is an attractive scheme, Mr. Swaminathan sought to highlight, adding that only half of the eligible customers coming to SBI Hyderabad facility however avail themselves of the benefit. This, despite the bank undertaking measures to create awareness about the CLSS.

Its home loan application also has a specific column to capture Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana (PMAY)-related information as a measure to identify potential clients at the time of processing of the application. Also, “in our home loan processing software, PMAY related fields have been made mandatory,” he said, while admitting “it is a fact that it has not picked up to the potential we thought it should pick up.”

SBI, which is the lead bank in Telangana, during 2017-18 disbursed 1,799 home loans under PMAY scheme against the target of 1,600. Banks in Telangana disbursed a little under 76,500 home loans amounting to Rs. 9,557.38 crore. Of this, share of home loans, extended under priority sector advances, was a shade over Rs. 4,000 crore and numbered 48,974.

On its part, SBI, Mr. Swaminathan added, has included details of the government-sponsored scheme in training programme for its employees.

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